Anyone wishing to be employed in long term care facilities to serve old and disable long term care population, must complete the federal Omnibus Reconciliation Act 1987 (OBRA-87) approved Nurse Aide Training and Evaluation Programs (NATCEP) and become a certified nurse aide (CNA) , because the classroom course Instruction and CNA Practice Test clinical training of the nurse aide program trains you in varied patient care skills and knowledge.
Nurse Aides are direct patient care workers working in a front-line position in a variety of approved health care settings and federally funded Medicare and Medicaid agencies. The federal OBRA-87 legislation was passed by the congress to improve the quality of cares in long term care facilities.
CNA Job Description
It is also necessary to remember that CNA duties largely depend upon the job description of CNAs employed in different positions. The nurse aide job description describes different types of CNA Duties and responsibilities that must be performed by a certified nurse aide working in a long term care facility, hospital, hospice, rehabilitation center, adult care center, nursing home, mental health care center. These medical duties are not only performed by facility based nurse aide but also executed by home health aides, travel nurse aides, school nurse aides and private duty CNA who want flexibility in their work.
You must also remember that the job description of a nurse aide requires execution of common nursing care duties, along with the specific responsibilities that are facility specified. For example, if you are working as a hospital nurse aide, your job description is decided by the specific department of the hospital where you are employed as a nurse assistant. Similarly, if you are employed in a Nursing Home, you will be asked to perform duties on the chronically ill elderly residents, who are there for the long term cares.
A school nurse aide has the responsibilities to look after the health developments of the students. Though, nurse aides working in the physician’s office execute more of clerical and operational duties than providing basic nursing cares. They take the medical history of the patients, collect specimens, attend phone calls, welcome customers, interact with other doctors for patients reports and on occasion they also collect doctor fees.
The basic CNA Duties performed by nurse aides in a number of health care settings include:
- Basic Nursing Cares and Personal Care Skills
- Infection Control, Emergency Cares & CPR
- Use of the Safety Techniques
- Promotion and Respect of the Patient’s Rights and Independence
- Care of Dementia or Cognitively Suffered Patients
- Mental Health Care and restorative care procedures
- Maintain Privacy and respect Confidentiality of the Residents
- Assist dying patients
In addition, CNAs must also possess excellent Communication and Interpersonal Skills because such qualities are required to provide emotional, mental and spiritual support to the patients and their family members alike. Even working under the direct supervision of a Registered Nurse or Licensed Practical Nurse, your communication skills will assist you in reporting everyday condition of the patients to a Physician or a RN.
The earning of CNAs also depends upon the types of CNA duties they execute in different positions. Nurse aides working in intensive care units and private clinics are offered better salary then CNAs working in less important positions such as front office, schools and physician’s office. Nurse aides working as home health aides or private duty CNAs are paid low as compared to travel nurse aides who visit distant places to execute nursing duties for a specific period of time.
Therefore, before you apply for any health care field job, you must try to find out the CNA Job description because the type of employment offered to you also decides your earning capacity. You must remember that by working in an important position, such as in Intensive Care Unit or Operation Theater of the hospital, you can earn higher salary, whereas getting employed in a lesser important position offers you lower salary.
In addition, the nurse aide salary also depends upon work experience, education, location, types of the facility, cities and urban centers, and standard of livings in specific place.
But, whatever nursing positions are offered to you, you must always remember that a nurse aide must possess certain very important qualities which are also essence of nursing cares including compassionate nature, humble behavior, excellent reasoning powers, amicable nature, team work, quick thinking and deciding capacities, meeting the mental and spiritual needs of the patients. The reason being, when long term care patient are brought under your care, they spend most of their time with you and expects you to meet their mental and emotional needs with compassion.